Former Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday requested Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan to allow dialysis centers to conduct COVID-19 vaccination for dialysis patients.
The Leader of Opposition in Maharashtra Assembly said that he has been receiving requests from families and caregivers to dialysis patients. "They inform me that they have faced umpteen difficulties during the peak of Corona and Lockdown right from transport to monetary challenges to get the lifesaving treatment of Dialysis. The Vaccination for COVID-19 has brought in ray of Hope to the Dialysis community. However, there are no slots available till the end of March, 2021," Fadnavis wrote.
Fadnavis said that Mumbai alone has over 10,000 dialysis centers. "As the vaccination centres in Mumbai are relatively crowded, walk-ins are not advisable for Dialysis patients as they have low immunity and limited energy to stand in queue for long time. These patients can be vaccinated only on Non-Dialysis days," he added.
"Hence, if allowed these patients can get vaccinated at their own dialysis centre in presence of government health officials with strict protocols considering them as special priority group, it will not only reduce burden on the vaccination centres but they will also get vaccinated in their own safe bio bubble. Most centres (private / Trust Run/ Govemment) in major cities are in hospitals and have trained technicians/nurses and Resident Doctors who can handle and monitor the health of patients post-vaccination," Fadnavis further wrote.
Fadnavis said that the United Kingdom (UK) has vaccinated dialysis patients on priority in their own centres and the first person to get AstraZeneca/ Oxford Jab was an 82-year-old dialysis patient. "I hope you will consider this request of thousands of dialysis patients and their families as an SOS call and allow the Dialysis Centres to conduct vaccination for the Dialysis Patients," he concluded.
Meanwhile, the number of people vaccinated against COVID-19 has reached 16.62 million in India.